Many of the world’s scientists, medical doctors, engineers, mathematicians, teachers and writers have studied and played musical instruments since they were children. These eminent individuals have integrated music into their thinking process. Music is a powerful tool for motivating, inspiring, educating and soothing pain. We are dedicating our April issue to women who play musical instruments and are scientists, medical doctors, engineers, mathematicians, teachers,and writers. Also we will continue to discuss how to improve teacher retention and encourage students to stay in school and graduate.
Remember no one is immune to the power of music! Parents remember to have classical music on your family’s iPod
Jane Austen (1775-1817) author of “Pride and Prejudice” was “the seventh child of the rector of the parish” at Steventon in Hampshire. She began to study the piano at nine years of age and continued to play throughout her life. Many of her heroines also played the piano. The piano was “an indispensable part of Jane Austen’s life”. Because music was expensive Jane Austen would write out the music she enjoyed. There are two manuscripts in her hand at Chawton Cottage.
Click here and listen to Madeline’s Musical One Minute Radio Show for April 2008. How did Jane Austen author of “Pride and Prejudice”start her day?
All of the following women began studying musical instruments as children: Hedy Lamarr (1913-2000), actress, pianist, mathematician “co-invented with George Antheil, avant garde composer, an early form of spectrum, a key to modern wireless communication” in June 1941.This invention is why the Wii is possible in 2008. Her mother was a pianist and her father a bank director. To read more click on the following link:
Dr. Condoleezza Rice is the “First African-American woman” to serve as U.S.Secretary of State (Jan. 28, 2005), the “First woman” to be the National Security Advisor (Jan 22, 2001) and also an accomplished classical pianist. She is the second Secretary of State to enjoy playing a musical instrument, the first being Thomas Jefferson who also enjoyed playing his violin in chamber music groups throughout his life and political career. She won a student piano competition at the age of 15, performing Mozart’s D minor Piano Concerto with the Denver Symphony Orchestra. At 15, she attended the University of Denver, “as a music major, having skipped the first and seventh grades” (Tommasini, 2006, P.1-3). She attended the Aspen Summer Music Festival in Colorado at 17 and afterwards decided to focus on international relations, the Soviet Union, instead of music. She has played piano with her piano quintet, all lawyers and musicians, for five years, rehearsing every two weeks and has played concerts with them at the British Embassy and at a private concert. Her favorite composer is Brahms. When cellist Yo-Yo Ma received the National Medal of the Arts at Constitution Hall “he requested that Ms. Rice accompany him”. They played an arrangement of the Brahms’s Violin Sonata in D minor for cello and piano, the slow movement.
She was born in Birmingham, Alabama on Nov. 14, 1954. On her mother’s side, she is a “fourth generation pianist.” She began the piano at three years of age taught by her maternal grandmother Mattie Ray who was a piano teacher and her first musical influence. In a black suburb of Birmingham, her mother, Angelena Rice, “taught music and science at an industrial high school” (Tommasini, 2006, P.1-3). Dr. Rice says “My mother was a church musician, and she read music beautifully….” Her father, John Rice, also loved music, particularly big-band jazz, was a Presbyterian Church minister in Birmingham like his father. John Rice’s father was a son of slaves. Dr. Rice says “Classical music became her passion from the day her mother bought her a recording of Verdi’s “Aida”. “My little eyes like saucers” listening to the “Triumphal March”. Dr. Rice earned her bachelor’s degree in political sciences in 1974 from the University of Denver, cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. In 1975 she received her master’s from the University of Notre Dame and her Ph.D. from the University of Denver Graduate School of International studies. For six years, 1993-1999, she was Provost at Stanford University where she was “the institution’s chief budget and academic officer. As Provost she was responsible for a $1.5 billion annual budget and the academic program involving 1,400 faculty members and 14,000 students” (Bio. Rice, Jan. 28,2005,p.1) Dr. Rice was professor of political science at Stanford University beginning in 1981 where she won the 1993 School of Humanities and Sciences Deans Award for Distinguished Teaching and the 1984 Walter J. Gores Award for Excellence in Teaching. To read more click on the following links:
The New York Times article “Music; And On Piano, Madame Secretary” & “Condoleezza Rice On Piano” (April 9, 2006) by Anthony Tommasini
Margaret F. Pinkston concert violinist received her BA in Chemistry and her Ph.D. in Biochemistry in 1976. She taught Chemistry/Biochemistry at Mary Baldwin College until retirement in 1989 and continues to play for symphonies in Charlottesville, Lynchburg and Rockbridge County. She was trained as a concert violinist at the Juilliard School (1936-1945) and was one of thirteen women musicians chosen from the Juilliard School to travel with the USO to play for conquering troops in Germany in May 1945.
Barbara Schick is a biochemist (Ph.D.) and musician. She began studying the piano as a child and continues to play. She began the cello twenty one years ago to participate in chamber music programs.
Francis Rauscher was trained as a concert cellist at the Juilliard School and earned a Master’s and Ph.D. in research psychology from Columbia University. She and Gordon Shaw physicist tested children studying piano and voice over 3 month intervals at the University of California, Center of Neurobiology of Learning and Memory, 1992-1995.
The IQ tests showed 80% gains in special reasoning which is useful for studying higher mathematics. Playing music “develops the neuropathways and you’re exercising them and making them stronger” (Baldwin, 1994, p.16). She has continued her work at the University of Wisconsin.
“Support Lacking for New Teachers” (March 1, 2008) by Anthony Rebora from Teacher Magazine. The biggest complaint a new first year teacher is not the low pay but the lack of strong support and backing. “The report is based on interviews with 641 first year teachers, found that nearly 80 % of new teachers would rather work in a school where administrators gave strong support and backing to teachers than in one that paid a significantly higher salary. To read more click on the following link:
“Finland: Where They Really Leave No Child Behind” (March 2, 2008) by Ellen Gamerman from the Wall Street Journal. The brightest students in the world with top scores are found in Finland where “well trained teachers” teach students who have a “love of reading” instilled in them starting when they are newborns. The government’s first gift to parents of newborns is a gift pack “that includes a picture book. Some libraries are attached to shopping malls, and a book bus travels to more remote neighborhoods like a Good Humor truck. Early on, kids do a lot without adults hovering and teachers create lessons to fit their students.” (Gamerman, 2008, Wall St Journal)
Hannele Frantsi, a school principal says, “We don’t have oil or other riches. Knowledge is the thing Finnish people have.” Finland is a homogeneous population where just about everyone speaks Finnish. The schools in Finland are “run like a teaching hospital” where there are around 800 trainee teachers every year. The children are taught by graduate students while their “instructors evaluate from the sidelines.” All teachers are required to have a master’s degree and for every job 40 teachers will apply. It is a very competitive profession and teachers are highly skilled.
“A New National Strategy for Improving Teaching in High –Need Schools” (March 4, 2008) by James B. Hunt, Jr. & Thomas H. Kean from Education Week. In many high-poverty schools there are teachers teaching without “a degree in the subject they are teaching.” The worst problem is in science and math. “Some U.S. programs take virtually everyone who applies.” McKinsey & Co. did a recent study on the education in industrial nations. They found that “top-performing countries put a premium on high-quality teachers: They select teachers carefully, pay them well” providing on going support and training giving “them time to work together.” To read more click on the following link:
“Program Looks to Boost Teacher Retention” (March 3, 2008; original issue date Nov 27, 2007) by Maryann Barone from the Daily TarHeel.com in North Carolina. In 2007 the Carolina Teachers’ Connection instituted a new program to pair an alumni from the School of Education with “recent education major graduates to help them as they prepare to go into the teaching field.” Lucy Williams, project coordinator says, “A lot depends on the support they get early on.” To read more click on the following link:
“FEA Helping Grow Teachers in State” (March 7, 2008) by Sarah Daniels from Columbia Flier.com. inMaryland. Because of the teacher shortage the county school officials have developed the FEA, Future Teachers Association “which is administrated by Phi Delta Kappa International, a professional association for educators, in 12 high schools. The program “is designed to help middle and high school students explore careers in education and provide them with opportunities for community service.” A senior at Atholton High School, Colleen McSweeney’s “eyes light up as she speaks of her work with the preschoolers in the Harriet Tubman Head Start Program.” She says “Working with kids is..something I enjoy.” Her plans are to go to college and become an elementary school teacher and possibly come back home to teach.
“Opening Minds Through the Arts” (OMA) On March 8, 2008, Saturday at 3pm, the Opening Minds Through the Arts will have a fund raising Showcase at Rincon/University High School Auditorium and Cafeteria. OMA program “integrating the musical arts into teaching reading, writing, math and science.” The program began 8 years ago in three elementary schools in Tucson, Arizona and is now in 44 Tucson Unified School District elementary and middle schools serving 19,000 students. The program has 700 teachers and 53 Teaching Artists. To read more click on the following link:
“A Medical Maestro: Can Mozart Treat Heart Disease” (March 18, 2008) by Roger Dobson from theIndependent.co.uk. In London at the Institute of Neurology, doctors reported that a 46 year old man with severe epilepsy for most of his life had tried every thing to stop his “seven generalized seizures a month.” including 7 epileptic drugs and brain surgery to control his seizures without success . Tests confirmed the deterioration of his memory and learning skills in the last nine years and he was being evaluated for more brain surgery. In the last three months, he decided to change his lifestyle by listening “to Mozart for 45 minutes a day” and he has been free of seizures. To read more click on the following link:
“Districts Struggles With Teacher Retention” (March 24, 2008) by Shawn Day from the Daily Press.com, Newport News, Virginia. Local school districts are using mentoring programs, “Rookie of the Year Awards”, workshops and pay increases to keep teachers in their school systems. To read more click on the following link:
“Who Should Get How Much? The Question of School Pay Raises” (March 23, 2008) by Shawn Day from the Daily Press.com, Newport News, Virginia. It was announced that a 4% increase in pay was “proposed for all city public schools employees.” To read more click on the following link:
“Classical Music Helps Soothe Stressed Dogs” (March 3, 2008) by Christine Morente fromInsideBayArea.com. After two years research, playing classical music to dogs at the Humane Society, it was found that dogs are more relaxed and are “more mentally and physically stimulated” through listening to classical music. The new book, “Through a Dog’s Ear: Using Sound to Improve the Health & Behavior of Your Canine Companion” was written by Leeds, a sound researcher, and Wagner, a board certified veterinary neurologist, and includes a classical piano CD performed by concert pianist, Lisa Spector. To read more click on the following link:
“Respect is Vital for Our Teenagers” (March 2008) by Elizabeth Hamilton author of “Character-in-Action Books” from her monthly “Character Building Newsletter“. As a teacher and parent, Mrs. Hamilton “knows that the first step, to teaching respect, is to set an example.” Teenagers need to be shown what respect is by teachers and parents showing respect to everyone they come in contact with. Teenagers learn by the examples they are shown, “Learning by Example“. Each of Mrs. Hamilton’s articles is a blue print on how to re-build character for improving your teen’s behavior. For your own copy of the “Character Building Newsletter” and Elizabeth Hamilton’s “Character- in –Action Books” click on the following link:
The question of the month:
Name a woman of valor who was an astronaut, electrical engineer, and classical pianist and the second American women in space?
Judith A. Resnik, (April 5, 1949- January 28, 1986) was from Akron, Ohio where she attended Akron’s Firestone High School and was a member of the math club, chemistry club, the French club, and a member of the honor society. On her Scholastic Aptitude Tests she “had perfect scores of 800.” Donald Nutter, math teacher, said “I can still see this little, short brunet in bobby socks and saddle shoes quiet as a mouse. If you had a question no one could answer, you could call on her.” Every day she practiced the piano for one hour. When she was questioned about her intensity on the piano she said, “I never play anything softly” (Brody, 1995, p.202). She received her Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering in 1970 from Carnegie-Mellon and then worked for RCA Corp. in Morristown, New Jersey working on circuitry for radar control systems. “While working for RCA, Resnik authored a paper on design procedures for special-purpose integrated circuitry” (Brody, 1995, p.202. She earned her Ph.D. in electrical engineering in 1977 at the University of Maryland at College Park. In 1978 prior to her selection by NASA, she worked for Xerox Corporation in El Segundo, Calif. She was chosen from more than 8,000 applicants to be an astronaut at NASA. Resnik completed her one-year training as an astronaut in August 1978. She worked on several projects on the Orbiter development software, training techniques, and Remote Manipulator System. In space her first assignment on the shuttle “Discovery” was as a mission specialist. While in space a chunk of ice had to be knocked off the craft’s side. She “pointed a camera on the craft’s robotic long arm to inspect initial efforts” to remove the ice (p.201). She and her crew were successful at removing the chunk of ice off the shuttle with the robotic arm. Resnik on the “Discovery” mission logged in 144 hours and 57 minutes in space (Frank, 1997, p.13).Her next mission was on the “Challenger” where she was killed.
To read more click on the following links:
For more medical evidence, test results, and true stories of the world’s scientists, medical doctors, and mathematicians who have studied and played musical instruments since they were children go to The Secret of Teaching Science & Math Through Music by Madeline Frank, Ph.D. click on the link below:
If anyone has an experience they would like to share on the benefits of classical music please send it and it will be include it in the May 2008 newsletter.
Mr. O in NYC sent in the following: “Don’t forget Dentists! Mine offers a headset with his choice. I bring my own CDs a certain M Frank prominent among them.” Nov/Dec 2007)
Mrs. C in VA. says her dentist has a choice of radio stations to listen to and she always picks the local classical music station. It makes the visit to the dentist’s office less painful. (Jan 2008)
This May if you have a question about the power of music for education and healing … what would your specific question be? Click on the link below and look on the left side to where it says ask Madeline a question: www.madelinefrankviola.com
To help your children learn fractions and decimals through the game of music look at Madeline’s, Musical Notes On Math, a Parent-to-Parent Award Winner. Click on the link below:
Evidence & Articles supporting the benefits of classical music in your daily life, in the Public School Classrooms, and while doing homework after school:
Mrs. C’s high school math class in Colorado: “The students asked for music in class. I told them I would play only Mozart. At first they objected but soon decided they liked the music, because it made them feel better and able to focus more on their lessons. Consequently, not only did the grades get better, so did the discipline. Then the students began requesting Mozart.”
Mrs. JC had her fourth grade reading class of 22 students, listening to Mozart and other classical music during class for the entire school year .The children have consistently made 100’s on tests and work. These are just average students not exceptional.
Mrs. G had her fifth grade students listening to classical music, played softly, while the children did creative writing assignments and when they did problem solving in math. It created a calm atmosphere conducive to problem solving and creative thinking as well as an appreciation of music that they might not have experienced. The results were so good that she incorporated this into her teaching for the last five yeas of her teaching career.
Mrs. J has 3 children, ages 16, 12, and 8 who have been listening to Mozart and other classical music while doing their homework after school since March 05. She has seen them become more focused and relaxed, finishing homework quicker, with more accuracy which has led to higher grades.
Northside Middle School in Norfolk, Virginia is using classical music in halls and class rooms with very good success. “Classical Music Plays at Norfolk School”
“Granite Falls Educator Is Nation’s Teacher of the Year“ (April 26, 2007) by Lynn Thompson from the Seattle Times Newspaper. The nation’s teacher of the year is Granite Falls music teacher, Andrea Peterson. Andrea Peterson, 33, teaches choir and music classes at Monte Cristo Elementary School. She plays “almost every instrument in the orchestra, sings, composes music, and writes lyrics for her students on subjects as diverse as ocean ecology and Shakespeare.”
“Opera Enlightens Local Elementary School” (Feb 15, 2008) by Steffaney Clark from the Gulf Breeze News. The students at Navarre Primary School in Pensacola, Florida created an entire opera, words, music, and sets, with the help of the Pensacola Opera Company and their music teacher, Ann Leffard and their art teacher. “The opera takes the entire year to complete” and this is the school’s second year working with the Pensacola Opera Company. Jamie Pahukoa, a second grade teacher said the opera “focused on reading, writing and basic skills. It shows that there are more creative ways for kids to learn than just handing out worksheets. We learn together and it boosts their self esteem and gives them a sense of pride for what we accomplish during the course of a year.”
“Food for the Brain” (Jan/Feb 1999) by Peter Perret from Symphony News. The Bolton Project in Winston-Salem, N. C. Using a classical music quintet, artist teacher to teach all core subjects in the public schools.
“How the Arts Make Kids Smarter” (July 7, 2007) by Mary Belle McCorkle and Shirley Kiser from theTucson Citizen, Tucson, Arizona. Gene Jones, a retired businessman…
“How Can Music Reach the Silenced Brain” (Jan 1, 2001) by Concetta M. Tomaino from the Dana Foundation. Concetta M. Tomaino as a music therapist has seen what music can do for her patients. Twenty years ago she played at the piano the popular song “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” and after a few minutes “silent patients turned their gaze to” her and she heard singing from the patients with “limited cognitive skills”. She uses the rhythm of music for her patients recovering from a stroke to walk and move by. One patient said “he wasn’t thinking about walking, he was thinking about dancing.”
“The Famous Neuroscientist Listens in On the Marvelous and Mysterious Ways that Music Inhabits, Enlivens, and Sometimes Even Hijacks the Brain” (Jan 2008) by Susan Kruglinski from Discover Magazine: The Year In Science. In his book “Musicophilia”, Dr. Sacks relates to Susan Kruglinski how he used music- the Volga Boatmen song , after he injured his leg 33 years ago, to push himself down the mountain with his elbows. He was five or six thousand feet high on a mountain by himself, before cell phones, and he used music going through his mind to save his life. Once again after his leg was set he used the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto to trigger “the ability to walk again.”
“Bro Menn’s Musician-Volunteers Play for Patients” (December 3, 2007) by Paul Swiech fromPantagraph.com In October BroMenn Regional Medical Center began offering its patients a program called Music for the Heart. Three student volunteer musicians “play for willing patients and their family members in some patient rooms and lounges.” Bob Brandt, 84, was “undergoing dialysis in a hospital bed at BroMenn Regional Medical Center” while he was listening to music. He “smiled from time to time” and his wife , Barbara Brandt said “that was lovely. I think this is a marvelous idea. A patient in the hospital has little to look forward to. Music is a wonderful addition.”
“Tango Improves Balance, Mobility in Patients with Parkinson’s Disease” (Jan. 31, 2008) by Beth Miller from the Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine. “Patients with Parkinson’s disease who took part in regular tango classes for 20 sessions showed significant improvement in balance and mobility when compared to patients who conventional exercise, a new study by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine.”
“Quantum Learning Empowers Students Through Accelerated Learning (Feb. 21, 2008) from Education News, Trans World News.com. For over 26 years Quantum Learning school programs and Super Camp academic summer camps have been Accelerating Learning through Dr. Georgi Lozanov’s work developed in the mid- 70’s. Dr. Lozanov, from Bulgaria, a professor of psychiatry and psychotherapy used “baroque music, …steady 60-80 beats per minute, melodic chord structures and instrumentation assists your body to access an alert yet relaxed state whereby stimulating receptivity and perception allowing you to perform better and remember more.”
“Artists as Education Consultants”(Feb 13, 2008) by Marcia Daft from Education Week.(pp.32-33) For the past fifteen years, Ms. Daft, a pianist, has worked as a “teaching artist” collaborating with classroom teachers to teach geometry, math, science, history and language arts.
Performing at Hospitals, Rehab Hospitals, and Retirement Homes
Madeline Frank, violist has shared her music with patients at local Hospitals and Rehab Hospitals in Virginia.
Wishing you and your family a happy April Fools Day and a healthy and happy Passover from your Non-Invasive Medicine…Music Expert, Madeline